Let’s get ready for Christmas and decorate the house! It can be tempting to buy sparkling ready-made Christmas decorations, but this year I have decided to get inspiration from nature and go towards a zero-waste and more environmentally friendly Christmas celebration. We’re going to decorate the house using mostly natural and recycled items.
There are a lot of things we can easily find at home that can be reused, upcycled, or re-purposed for Christmas decorations. It’s a great alternative to buying plastic and other non-biodegradable decorations and a budget-friendly way to decorate your home with home made Christmas decorations for the holidays.
Involve the kids
Take the opportunity to engage the kids, by walking outdoors with them to look for and collect the items you will need for the projects, and find inspiration in the unique shapes of different spices and nuts. Then you will only need to combine those natural items with paper, glue, ribbons, twine and candles, to create your unique and beautiful Christmas decorations. It will also be an amazing opportunity for the family to come together and remember what is truly important.
1. Pistachio shells Christmas tree
All you will need for this craft is a bowl of pistachios, a paper cone, and glue. Pistachio shells are hard, making them an excellent natural material to use for craft. And the best part of it is that the kids will have an extra incentive to have a healthy snack.
After eating the pistachios I usually give the shells a quick wash to remove any small pieces of pistachio nut that may be left behind. Once dried, they are ready to glue to the paper cone and make a beautiful Christmas tree. The kids can later add their personal touch, by painting, adding cotton balls, pipe cleaners, fairy lights, or anything else that their imagination leads them to.
2. Rustic twig ornaments
This natural DIY Christmas decoration using only twigs and twine, will be a beautiful and rustic addition to any Christmas tree. With a little creativity, twigs can make beautiful natural Christmas ornaments, or if you prefer, they can also be used as gift bag toppers.
For this craft, you will need twigs, hot or white glue, twine, and ribbons to decorate (if you want to add some color). Simply cut the twigs into pieces and glue them into the shape of your choice, wrapping the edges with a piece of twine. If you’re not using hot glue, let it sit for a couple of hours to dry well before adding twine or ribbons.
3. Scented Christmas centrepiece
To make this centrepiece you will need a wire, twine(or ribbon), candles, plants with green-leafed branches (rosemary branches are perfect if you like the scent), and spices and herbs from your kitchen.
First, arrange the candles on a plate or a tray (I have used a round green piece of felt as a base). Shape the wire into a circle and cover it with twine or a green ribbon. Lay your branches on the wire circle, then wrap them firmly using a string.
Place the candles in the middle, and add the cinnamon sticks, dried orange slices and fresh herbs all around them. Last spread some nuts and star anises around it. You can also make a bow with a ribbon to add a red touch to it. The result is a charming Christmas centrepiece with an amazing scent.
4. Santa’s scented sachets
If you, like me, love the smell of Christmas, but you don’t want to buy those expensive and toxic scented candles, this craft is for you. They can also be used as decorations that will not only decorate your tree, but also freshen your home filling it with a Christmas scent.
Make a small bag with pieces of felt or any red fabric (I used the sleeves of an old red shirt) that you can either glue or sew. Place dry orange slices, nutmeg, cinnamon, rosemary, star anise and cloves inside, closing it with a sting. Make a few small naturally scented sachets like this, which you place all around the house.
5. Rustic Santa decoration
This rustic Santa makes a beautiful decoration for your balcony, front porch or anywhere in the house you want to put it. It’s cute, easy to make, and is my favorite decoration of this holiday season. It needs only upcycled and natural materials and it costs next to nothing to make it.
The best part is that I finally found a way to use those elastic ear straps of disposable face masks. After so many months of throwing away lots of masks (but always cutting the elastic ear straps first, to avoid animals from getting tangled in it), it made me feel so good to be able to recycle at least part of it.
The first thing you will need is to cut up a thick fallen branch (or use a woodblock) to any size you want, then paint or cover it with red fabric. Cut a cone-shaped piece of felt or fabric to make the hat. You can either sew the fabric or use glue, which is the best choice if you want to engage the kids.
To make the beard, you will need around ten elastic straps from disposable masks. Fold and sew them together. The nose can be made with a pom-pom, a wooden bead, cotton balls, or anything that you already have at home. I carved the nose out of a wine cork and I love the final result. The kids can also help to decorate Santa with items they can find around the house. You might be surprised by their creativity.
6. Angel with a heart
This is a very beautiful decoration using only a glass bottle, wire, and a few materials that we usually have at home. The cotton ball will be the angel’s head. Cover the bottle with paper, fabric, paint, or in case it’s a clear glass you can place fairy lights inside it. Shape a small piece of twine into a round hallo and attach it to the cotton ball using hot glue.
Bend the wire into a wing shape and tie the heart with a string using the hot glue to tie it around the angel’s neck. To make the heart, shape a piece of wire into a heart shape and wrap twine or a thin ribbon all around it.
Using materials that will compost afterward, instead of more plastic, will make your home look more natural, and you will be teaching the kids to be more eco-friendly. Not to mention it’s an opportunity to have some screen-free activities for the family. Happy Holidays!
To experience that special Christmas vibe, head over to Pavilion KL with the family to view the dashing Christmas decorations they’ve put on this year. More here!